In 2017, Taylor Swift won a case against a man who sexually assaulted her during a meet-and-greet in 2013. Swift accused radio DJ David “Jackson” Mueller of grabbing her butt during a backstage photo op. Mueller filed suit against her, claiming the accusations were false, and she fired back with her own lawsuit, saying it was an example for other women “who may resist publicly reliving similar outrageous and humiliating acts,” according to BuzzFeed News.
The jury sided with Swift; Mueller had been suing her for $3 million, but Swift only asked for a symbolic $1. Tuesday was the anniversary of her win, and Swift made a speech during her Reputation tour in Tampa, Florida. Fans captured her getting emotional while delivering her prepared words.
Protect Taylor Swift at all costs pic.twitter.com/DouswxyOen
— natasha (@natnieIs) August 15, 2018
This exact day a year ago, I was not playing a sold out stadium in Tampa. I was in a courtroom in Denver, Colorado, and I was there for a sexual assault case. This day a year ago was the day the jury decided in my favour, and said that they believed me. I’m don’t want to– I guess I just think about all the people that weren’t believed, and the people who are afraid to speak up because they think they won’t be believed.
I just wanted to say I’m sorry to anyone who wasn’t believed, because I don’t know what turn my life would have taken if people didn’t believe me when I said that something had happened to me. I guess I just wanted to say that we have so, so, so much further to go, and I am so grateful to you guys for being there for me during what was a really, really horrible part of my life.
I just wanted to say that, and I wanted to thank you for everything. I know that when I meet you guys at meet and greets before and after the shows, you tell me about the hard times you’ve gone through in your lives, and I really appreciate you trusting me with that information. You guys have seen me go through so many ups and downs in my life, just due to the public nature of the way my life is, and I’m just so happy to see you and to have you and to know you through the ups and downs of my life.
Thank you for everything. I’m sorry, I just haven’t really talked about it, so I’m just not composed at all. A while ago, I wrote a song that’s about how I feel when you guys come together and are so wonderfully supportive and incredible. For me, this song is always going to be about you. Ups and downs, win or lose, you guys have always been there for me. So thank you for that.
Fans in Tampa were also circulating fake $1 bills, asking that people hold them up in support of Swift and victims of sexual assault everywhere:
— Jacie (@Jc_annette46) August 14, 2018
Swift found out about bills and thanked everyone on her Instagram stories:
Not a lot of women have the power to strike back at their attackers; as she acknowledges in her speech many of them aren’t even believed. Swift subjected herself to scrutiny and embarrassment to be an example to other women of what’s possible when you stand up for yourself.